What does Matthew 12:23 mean?
ESV: And all the people were amazed, and said, “Can this be the Son of David?”
NIV: All the people were astonished and said, 'Could this be the Son of David?'
NASB: And all the crowds were amazed and were saying, 'This man cannot be the Son of David, can he?'
CSB: All the crowds were astounded and said, "Could this be the Son of David? "
NLT: The crowd was amazed and asked, 'Could it be that Jesus is the Son of David, the Messiah?'
KJV: And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the son of David?
NKJV: And all the multitudes were amazed and said, “Could this be the Son of David?”
Verse Commentary:
Jesus has just healed a demon oppressed man who could not see or speak, likely by removing the demon from him (Matthew 12:22). Suddenly, the man spoke and saw. The change must have been dramatic, because Matthew reports that the crowd was amazed.

In some cases, people react to Christ's miracles with fear (Mark 5:14–17) or awe (Matthew 8:26–27). This time, the people connect their amazement with the possibility that Jesus might be the long-promised Messiah: the Savior of Israel. They ask each other, "Can this be the Son of David?" The name "Son of David" was a title reserved for the Messiah. It came from God's promise to David to establish his throne over Israel forever (2 Samuel 7:16).

Because of Isaiah's prophecies, many Israelites likely associated the time of the Messiah's coming with the healing of the blind, the deaf, the lame, and the mute (Isaiah 35:5). Jesus had accomplished all those miracles and many more. Those who witnessed this healing made the correct connection between Jesus' power and the idea that He might be the Messiah.

Not everyone who witnesses this will be so reasonable. Some are so committed to disbelief (John 5:39–40) that they'll explain the supernatural act as coming from Satan (Matthew 12:24).
Verse Context:
Matthew 12:22–32 begins with Jesus healing a demon-oppressed man who cannot see or speak. The passage ends with a controversial, troubling statement. The crowds wonder if Jesus is the Messiah. Some Pharisees say Jesus casts out demons by the power of the prince of demons. Jesus counters their argument with both logic and a harsh rebuke. The Pharisees have missed the truth: the kingdom of God has come. Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit—seeing such a miracle and attributing it to Satan—is a sin which will not be forgiven.
Chapter Summary:
Matthew 12 features confrontations between the Pharisees and Jesus over several issues. Among these are working on the Sabbath, healing on the Sabbath, and the source of His power to cast out demons. Jesus counters each argument and rebukes the Pharisees sharply for their obstinate unbelief. He even notes that those who maliciously ascribe His miracles to demons are unforgivable. He warns them, and the rest of their current generation, about the judgment to come. Jesus calls the Pharisees a brood of vipers and rejects their demand for another miracle. All they'll be promised is the sign of Jonah. The Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth for three days. Jesus also states that all who do His Father's will are His family.
Chapter Context:
Matthew 11 depicted Jesus preaching and teaching after sending out His chosen disciples in pairs in chapter 10. Chapter 12 immediately picks up with more confrontation with the Pharisees. Jesus responds to those criticisms and rebukes their evil hearts as the source of their evil words. In the following chapter, Matthew will shift His focus onto Jesus' parables.
Book Summary:
The Gospel of Matthew clearly shows the influence of its writer's background, and his effort to reach a specific audience. Matthew was one of Jesus' twelve disciples, a Jewish man, and a former tax collector. This profession would have required literacy, and Matthew may have transcribed some of Jesus' words as they were spoken. This book is filled with references to the Old Testament, demonstrating to Israel that Jesus is the Promised One. Matthew also includes many references to coins, likely due to his former profession. Matthew records extensive accounts of Jesus' teaching, more than the other three Gospels.
Accessed 5/27/2024 11:34:25 PM
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